St Patrick’s GNS, Hollypark

Mobile Phone and Related Devices Policy

 

Policy ratified: _______________________

 

Review date: ________________________

 

Signed: _________________________ (Chairperson, BOM)

At the time of drawing up this policy, all details and the enclosed information are correct. It is possible that between now and the review date, changes may have to be made to the provisions, policies and procedures of the school. This may be due to external changes required by the Department of Education and Skills, the school patron or other agencies. Mandatory policies will be available on the school website and up to date information will be posted regularly.

Introduction and Rationale

The possession and use of mobile phones by school students is now extensive, even in the primary school sector. Use of mobile phones in school (particularly with the advent of increasingly sophisticated equipment and camera phones) presents a number of problems.  They can be a distraction to learning, cause discipline problems, used to bully, menace, harass or offend another person. There are also privacy concerns mainly related to the ability of many phones to take photographs, make video recordings or record. In order to manage the use of mobile phones this policy has been reviewed.

This policy is drawn up in the interest of the children’s safety and protection. The school has also taken account of the fact that dealing with issues arising from the use and misuse of mobile phones has, in the past, considerably depleted valuable curriculum teaching time.

Relationship to Our School Ethos

The use of mobile phones and other related devices contravenes the provision of a safe and secure school environment and is not conducive to learning - a provision which is central to the mission statement and ethos of St. Patrick’s GNS, Hollypark.

 

School Procedures:
  • Where a parent/guardian considers it a necessity in the interests of the safety of their child, pupils are permitted to bring basic mobile phones to school – ie: phones with the facility to call or text only and which have no access to the internet or capacity to upload photos, download games, videos, apps etc.

  • The Class Teacher must be informed in writing by the parents/guardians if a pupil is bringing a basic mobile phone to school.

  • The school accepts no responsibility for loss/damage to this basic mobile phone.

  • Under no circumstances are the pupils allowed to switch on mobile phones during the school day.

  • Pupils are not permitted to bring other devices with internet access or recording or photographic capability such as smartphones, i-touches, tablet etc within the school grounds of St. Patrick’s GNS, Hollypark.

  • The above use of mobile phones applies to all school outings offsite.

 

Sanctions:

In the event of a basic mobile phone being switched on in the school/schoolgrounds/tours/outings etc.  the following sanctions will apply:

  • The phone (and SIM card) will be confiscated immediately and retained in the school for seven days. At the end of this period the parent/guardian will collect the device from the office.

  • The pupil concerned will write a letter of apology to the Class Teacher.

  • In second and subsequent breaches of the policy the Principal will be informed and will meet the parents/guardians and further sanctions may be applied.

In the event of a smartphone or other such device being brought into the school/ schoolgrounds /tours/outings etc the following sanctions will apply:

  • The smartphone (and SIM card) or other such device will be confiscated immediately and retained in the school for seven days. At the end of this period the parent/guardian will collect the device from the office.

  • The pupil concerned will write a letter of apology to the Class Teacher.

  • In second and subsequent breaches of the policy the Principal will be informed and will meet the parents/guardians and further sanctions may be applied.

 

In the event of inappropriate use of any device – for example photos or videos being taken or uploaded etc the following sanctions will apply:

  • The phone (and SIM card) or other device will be confiscated immediately and retained in the school for seven days.  (The school reserves the right to extend the period of confiscation for second and subsequent inappropriate uses of a mobile phone or related device.)

  • The parents/guardians will be asked to meet the Principal.

  • The Principal will use his/her discretion to consult with outside agencies and the Board of Management on the matter.

 

 

Phone Use by Staff
 Work Calls

 

  • All telephone calls to parents/guardians should be kept as short as possible, having ascertained that the parent/guardian is in a position to engage.

  • Where a lengthy conversation is required, arrangements may be made for a meeting or for a longer telephone conversation at a mutually acceptable time.

  • Calls to other professionals, organisations etc. should be made in consultation with the principal.

 

Personal Calls

 

  • In general, personal calls should be carried out during break times or after school.

  • In cases of urgency, a staff member should use discretion in making call.

  • Incoming personal calls should be reserved for urgent matters.

 

Mobile Phones and Other Related Devices

 

  • In general, mobile phones should remain switched off or on silent or discreet mode.

  • In cases of urgency, staff should use discretion in making and receiving calls.

  • In certain circumstances, staff members are required to have their mobile phones switched on –when on out-of-classroom activities/events, if concerned about a child’s welfare etc.

  • Texting should follow the rules in relation to calls.

 

 

It should be noted that it is a criminal offence to use a mobile phone to menace, harass or offend another person. As such, if action as sanctioned by the Principal is deemed ineffective the school may consider it appropriate to inform the Gardaí.

 

Responsibility:

It is the responsibility of parents, staff and children to adhere to this policy.

 

Evaluation:

This policy is monitored on an ongoing basis and amendments are added as new technology comes on stream or as necessary.

St. Patrick's GNS, Hollypark, Foxrock Avenue, Dublin 18.  D18V659

Phone: 01 2893293  

Email: hollyparkgns@gmail.com

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